What is guardianship?
- If an individual is unable to make his/her own decisions and care for themselves independently, they can be deemed incapacitated by a judge and have a guardian appointed.
How do we know if guardianship is needed?
- Can the individual provide food, shelter, clothing, safety, and healthcare for themselves?
- Is the individual able to effectively communicate and make critical decisions regarding finances, healthcare, and personal care?
- Is the individual able to read and understand contracts?
- Can the individual live independently and ensure his/her own safety?
Is guardianship expensive?
- No, guardianship is not always an expensive process. In some cases, guardianship can be accomplished “pro-se” (without an attorney).
Is the process difficult?
- No, if you chose to petition for guardianship “pro-se,” the Utah Courts Website has a system in place to help guide you through the process.
- Online Courts Assistance Program (OCAP): https://www.utcourts.gov/ocap/
- Additionally, you always have the option to seek legal counsel to assist you.
When can I start the process?
- The guardianship process can be started as early as 17.5 years of age.
What if I didn’t get guardianship immediately when my child turned 18?
- Although we recommend starting the guardianship process as soon as possible to account for emergencies or medical issues, you can actually petition for guardianship any time after the individual is 17.5 years old.
Who can I talk to if I have additional questions?
- Transition University at the Utah Parent Center is available to answer your guardianship questions. 801-272-1051
Look for more resources on guardianship on our other helpful pages here.